I wanted to share my story about Paloose, a.k.a, Lucy. She is my 5 year old Australian Shepherd. Thanks to Lucy, two guys who were alluding police were captured on December 12th of 2000. One of the two was convicted Thursday, April 12th and will be serving a mandatory 10 year sentence! He is a violent career criminal who was on probation. (In my book she does a lot of amazing stuff but this one is pretty good too)
First I wanted to tell you a little about her. I was boarding my horse at Sparks Ranch in Coconut Creek just before her birth. Her mom, Pebbles, was having her first litter and it was a big one. Twelve pups in all. Two other boarders were trying to help Pebbles have her puppies but they were coming way too fast. They had no choice but to set Lucy and her sister aside since they were very weak when born. They didn’t know how to help them. Others were still coming fast and they needed to help them too. I was working for a vet at the time and had some basic experience with this. When I got there I rubbed her then removed the fluid from her mouth. She was too weak to do it herself and was dying. I breathed little puffs of air and held her against my body to warm up. It began to work and we started on the other puppy. Thank goodness they made it.
I bottle fed the two puppies for about a week since they were weaker than the others. That combined with the care their mom gave them did the trick! I saw Lucy every day and just fell in love with her. As thanks, the owner of Pebbles gave me the pup I saved. We called her Paloose, a nickname for the Appaloosas we have.
I have had her at home since she was six weeks old. Since then Lucy has traveled with us to horse shows helping guard our tack stall and she watches over the children very carefully. She has been a wonderful member of the family ever since.
She is a fair watch dog. Sometimes she barks but most people go by without a bother. We have a canal behind our house and people are there quite often. Every now and then she gives a little bark. She is always friendly and playful until December 12th, 2000.
Sheila (Right) , Lucy and Sheila’s daughter Alissia points to location where the 2 men were seen
I was startled practically out of my skin when I heard her frantically barking. I have never heard her like this. I ran to the patio door and she was foaming at the mouth and all the hair was standing up on her back. She was going crazy! This was so unlike her! I tried to go outside the patio door but she wouldn’t let me out. Finally, I see 2 men across the canal in the reeds. (The canal backs up to Wiles Road) It is hard to walk since it is a narrow bank by a retainer wall. Normally I would have just let it go as I have seen teens back there before. I know this dog. I trusted her reaction totally. Something wasn’t right so I called the police.
I had no idea what became of the two men until about a month later when the court notified me I was a stand-by witness. I can’t tell you how surprised I was. Finally, on April 12th, I went to court as a witness in the case against one of the 2 men I saw. One is a career criminal with a violent record. He was out on probation and had just robbed a house with his accomplice. The lady who owned the house, walked in on them and they ran. She called the police from her front yard. The police weren’t able to catch them as they disappeared in the canal. It looked like they were home free until they came across my Aussie, Lucy. She told me something was wrong and thanks to her this guy is now serving mandatory 10 year prison sentence and the stolen property was recovered.
Without her I would have never known they were there. They most likely would have escaped the police told me and the string of robberies could have continued. Without her extreme reaction, I would have never been alarmed enough to call the police. She knew to alert me in a way I could understand and then protected me from harm. She is a true hero in my book!